Archive for March, 2005

Spenchian to Lead Saab Cars USA

Posted on 31. Mar, 2005 by .




Spenchian to Lead Saab Cars USA

DETROIT – Jay Spenchian will become general manager of Saab Cars USA, effective April 1, Mark LaNeve, GM North America vice president of Vehicle Sales, Service and Marketing, announced today. Spenchian has served as marketing director of Cadillac since 2004. He replaces Debra Kelly-Ennis, who has accepted a position with Diageo North America.

“Jay’s experience launching the Cadillac CTS, SRX and STS in premium segments globally makes him the ideal choice for this position,” LaNeve said. “We believe he’s the right person to lead Saab during its most aggressive vehicle development program in its history.”

Spenchian, 46, joined General Motors in 1998 and has held a variety of positions with Cadillac, including marketing director for the CTS, XLR and SRX, and brand manager of the Escalade. Prior to joining GM, Spenchian held brand management positions with companies such as The Pillsbury Company, Sara Lee Corporation, H.J. Heinz Co. and Pepsico, Inc. He has a bachelor’s degree and an MBA from Michigan State University.

Kelly-Ennis joined GM in 1998 following a career in sales and general management with non-automotive companies such as RJR/Nabisco and Grand Metropolitan PLC. With her move to Diageo she returns to the industry where her career began. “We’re very appreciative for all of Debra’s contributions at Saab and throughout her career at GM,” LaNeve said. “We wish her the best at Diageo.”

General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM), the world’s largest automaker, has been the global industry sales leader since 1931. Founded in 1908, GM today employs about 324,000 people around the world. It has manufacturing operations in 32 countries and its vehicles are sold in 200 countries. In 2004, GM sold nearly 9 million cars and trucks globally, up 4 percent and the second-highest total in the company’s history. GM’s global headquarters are at the GM Renaissance Center in Detroit. More information on GM can be found at

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Jan-Ake Jonsson Managing Director of Saab Automobile

Posted on 09. Mar, 2005 by .



Photo Credit: Saab Automobile AB


Jan-Ake Jonsson named Managing Director of Saab Automobile, Peter Augustsson to leave, pursue other business opportunities.

Trollhättan, Sweden — Peter Augustsson, the Chief Executive of Saab Automobile since 2000, has decided to leave his position at Saab and General Motors. Carl-Peter Forster, President of General Motors Europe, will assume the role of Chairman of the Saab Automobile AB board, and Jan-Ake Jonsson will assume the role of Managing Director for the brand.

“Peter has demonstrated a true belief in the Saab brand, and its people, over the years of his stewardship,” said GM Europe Chairman Fritz Henderson. “He has steadfastly led Saab to a significant brand positioning within the GM brand structure, and has supported the improvement in the production facility there in Trollhattan, ultimately leading to the decision to build the all-new Cadillac BLS along side Saabs in the facility beginning early next year.

“We wish him the best in his new endeavors.”

Augustsson had joined Saab as Executive Vice President in 1998, rising to the chief executive role in 2000, and assuming the chairman title in 2002. He plans to open a business development company in the near future.

“This has been a very challenging, but exciting, time for me professionally,” Augustsson said. “I am absolutely convinced that the direction GM is taking the Saab brand is good for the brand and the local employees here in Sweden. GM is committed to the brand and its growth potential, and there is every reason to believe we will have a solid production future here in Sweden.

“I felt that it was the right time for me to move on to something I’ve wanted to do for some time. I wish Jan Ake and Carl-Peter the best of luck in their future roles with Saab.”

Augustsson’s departure is effective April 1, as are the appointments of Forster and Jonsson.

“The combination of Jan-Ake leading the Saab brand, and Carl-Peter leading the Board is a strong one,” said Henderson. “Combine that with the functional alignment we have in Europe for the sales and marketing, manufacturing and engineering operations, and there’s every reason to believe in the future success of Saab.”

Jan-Ake Jonsson first joined Saab-Scania Car Division in 1973 in Nyköping Sweden, and held a variety of positions until becoming Director, Aftersales & Services for Saab Automobile AB in Trollhättan Sweden in 1990. Since then he has held a variety of executive positions in the engineering and sales and marketing organizations within Saab and General Motors Europe. Most recently, Jonsson was Executive Director of Sales and Marketing for the Nordic region for General Motors Europe, including Saab.


Date of birth September 18, 1951
Place of birth Valdemarsvik, Sweden
Family Married, two children
Current position Managing Director of Saab Automobile
Date of employment 1973

2005 – VP Managing Director of Saab Automobile
2002 – 2005 Sales & Marketing, Europe and Asia-Pacific, Saab Automobile
2002 – 2002 Executive Director and Vehicle Line Executive, Commercial vehicles, GM Europe
1997 – 2002 Vehicle Line Executive, Trucks/Vans/Mini-segment, GM Europe
1995 – 1997 Director, Business Unit 9000/9-5, Saab Automobile
1993 – 1995 Vice President, Quality and Customer Satisfaction, Saab Automobile
1991 – 1993 Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Saab Cars USA
1990 – 1991 Manager, Parts/Accessories/Service/Vehicle Distribution/IS, Saab Automobile
1985 – 1990 Director, Information Systems, Saab-Scania of America
1973 – 1985 Various positions in the Systems Development area, Saab-Scania AB

Degree in Business Administration/Information Systems, Uppsala Univeristy/Linköping Technical School, Sweden.

The family, tennis, golf

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New Saab 9-3 SportCombi:Satisfying Wants and Meeting Needs

Posted on 01. Mar, 2005 by .


Photo Credits: Saab Automobile



New Saab 9-3 SportCombi:Satisfying Wants and Meeting Needs

The new Saab 9-3 SportCombi takes Saab into the premium, mid-size wagon segment for the first time by combining distinctive design with sporty driving dynamics as an alternative to the qualities of a conventional wagon.

The strong, compact proportions of the 9-3 SportCombi are a bold reaffirmation of Saab’s tradition for designing cars that are sporty in character and versatile in use. With cohesive five-door styling and a muscular, ‘hewn from solid’ stance, it has a clear, stand-out identity within the 9-3 Sport Sedan and Convertible range

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Saab Geneva Highlights

Posted on 01. Mar, 2005 by .



Photo Credits: Saab Automobile


Saab Geneva Highlights

Saab continues the most comprehensive new model development program in its history by unveiling the all-new Saab 9-3 SportCombi. Its arrival also coincides with the start of sales in the United States of the new Saab 9-7X SUV model. Both these products will propel the brand into new, expanding market segments

Main attractions on the Saab stand:

World Premiere for all-new Saab 9-3 SportCombi

Making its public debut at this year’s show, the Saab 9-3 SportCombi will take Saab into the premium, mid-size wagon segment for the first time. Its distinctive looks and features build on a Saab tradition for designing cars that are sporty in character and versatile in use.

Launch of new 2.8V6 Turbo engine

The top-of-the-line 9-3 SportCombi Aero showcases the first turbocharged application of GM’s new global V6 architecture. The sophisticated 250 bhp, all-aluminum, DOHC engine includes variable valve timing and a twin-scroll turbocharger. It is the most advanced turbo engine yet fitted to a Saab and will also be added to the 9-3 Sport Sedan and Convertible ranges.

Debut for full Saab 9-3 line-up: Sport Sedan, Convertible, SportCombi

For the first time, Saab offers a choice of three distinct bodystyles within a single model line. All variants of the Saab 9-3 range share the same widely-acclaimed chassis dynamics, including Saab’s unique ReAxs rear-wheel steer feature, giving outstanding driver involvement and control.

Latest top-of-the-line Saab 9-5 Aero Wagon

Combining the performance of a 250 bhp turbocharged engine with a sports-tuned chassis and useful load-carrying features, the Aero leads an impressive sedan and wagon range. The line-up will include the premium segment’s first ethanol-powered model when the 9-5 BioPower is launched on the Swedish market this summer.

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Production Concept